India must lift ban on social media in Kashmir, it hurts fundamental rights: UN

India must immediately revoke a ban on social media in Jammu and Kashmir to guarantee freedom of expression and seek a lasting solution to the decades-long conflict through democratic dialogue, the United Nations said on Thursday.

A statement released and published by the UN high commissioner for human rights said the gag was a “collective punishment” that didn’t meet the international standards for limiting free speech.

“The scope of these restrictions has a significantly disproportionate impact on the fundamental rights of everyone in Kashmir, undermining the government’s stated aim of preventing dissemination of information that could lead to violence,” the report, authored by two UN human rights experts, said.

The report noted a ban on mobile internet — 3G and 4G data services – which were restored last month after a brief disruption.

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